The Wonderful Italian Diet

We had been to the doctor in Orlando before flying off to Italy! Yes…we had heard what the dr said! If it is animal based…stay away! If it is plant based….eat with great taste!

It was hard to think like that knowing we were headed to the land of pancetta, parmesan, and gelato! Did the Doctor realize that he was causing me possible high blood pressure trying to resist all the great Italian delicacies? Yes, if I followed his advice my cholesterol would probably go down, but now I was so high strung trying to stay away from all the foods we were coming to Italy for!

Well…we showed him! Ok maybe we arent showing him but we certainly have figured out how to have our cake and gelato too!

The last several days we have noticed that we dont even have to unzip our pants to pull them off. They slide down on their own! WHAT? We are in Italy for Heavens sake! How can this be? Do people really come here and loose weight? Well Guido and I are living proof that it happens! Here is our story!

It all began April 18th when we landed in Florence for a month. We had just arrived from Rome where we had stayed for two days trying to adjust to the 8 hr time change!

Our taxi delivered us to the door of the apartment that we would call home for the next month! The host greeted us and unlocked the front door to the building! We saw a group of stairs leading to another door that was in front of us…..no problem, there were just 5 stairs. We are old but no problem, 5 little stairs are nothing. Even with our 5 bags. Then the second door is opened snd there before us are more stairs! Randy looks at me and says, “did you check with the listing page to be sure there is an elevator?” Oopsie! No didnt do that! Laura, our host says, ” no worries, it is just on 4 th floor!” What….we have to climb up to 4th floor every time we come home! And carry groceries up 4 flights of stairs! But we need one hand to hold on to the hand railing so we dont fall and break a hip or ankle! This is crazy!

We began the ascent! Im proud to tell you that we made that first trip up in less than 10 min. We kept having to stop and catch our breath at each landing. Laura had felt sorry for us and told us to leave the bags and she would have her brother bring them up. If she had not done that i was ready to admit defeat and tell her to just shoot me. There was no way neither of us would be able to carry the bags up! As Laura was showing us the apartment and everything we needed to know I ask her if there was a hospital near by in case we had a heart attack climbing up! She laughed and said,”oh you are funny, you will get use to them by the second day!” Apparently she didnt realize what she was saying to Ms Butter Queen who has butter running through her veins

After she left us to get settled, Guido just looked at me and shook his head! He said, “lets sit down right now and, after our breathing returns to normal, check our other places we have reserved for the next two months and be sure that if they are higher than the ground floor that there is an elevator! Should we actually not die from a heart attack this month and be able to continue on i dont want to push our luck by moving to another place without an elevator!” After all, we both had read somewhere that hearts only have so many beats before they give out. And right now, ours was using up alot of those allotted beats!

Well Laura was right. By the end of two weeks, we didnt collapse by the time we got up to the second floor. By 3 weeks we didnt have to stop after 3 floors and have a nap before going on up to the 4 th! And my oh my, by the 4 th week, we were able to climb all the way up to the 4 th before our hearts beat out of our chest! Then we left for Rome! Just when we were getting this stair climbing down!

We looked back over the 4 weeks in Florence and realized why we had lost weight. Not only had we exercised but we had eaten less than we even dreamed. By the time we would come home from sigh seeing and exploring, we would just look at each other and one of us would say, “lets just eat soup or toast tonight, i just dont have the energy to make one more trip up the stairs today!”

And that my sweet traveling friends who are dreaming of coming to Italy but afraid that you will come here only to go back home a size larger is a fool proof way to loose weight when here! Oh…one (or two) more secrets to loosing weight! When out exploring a favorite town here, just order off the menu with pride! Try to make the food servers think you know Italian! I got cocky and ordered a pizza thinking that the word acciughe was a cheese! It wasnt. There before me sat a pizza filled with all the cutest little anchovies you have seem! I tried to pick them off and eat the pizza but i just could not. Ended up having breadsticks for dinner.

And last tip is this! When you know that you are allergic to milk, do not buy the statement “oh everything in Italy is different. Not as much processing and you probably wont have problems with the milk there!” So i went on a gelato spree! Guess i went a little over board having gelato 3 times in 3 days. I wont bore you with the details but lets just say that i probably lost a couple pounds that week alone!

So there you have it! The medical advice you must have to loose weight in Italy!

The walking alone burns so many calories that you can have a plate of pasta without guilt. Taking the subway in Rome is hard on your knees snd Lots of stairs going down and up but the calories burned allowed us to enjoy a dish of cacio peppe, my new favorite dish! And yes, i know what it is now ( pasta with cheese, pepper and pasta water) and can actually pronounce it….with a Southern draw!

You might not recognize us when we get back to Texas! We are almost skin and bones now! But we are going to really try hard the next two months to put some of our weight back on . We are only staying in bldgs with “lifts” and riding the buses! We dont want to scare our friends and family into thinking we have lost too much weight. So we are eating as much as possible….because we are just that type of people….caring, giving and thoughtful of others! Arrivederci

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